June 6, 2016 / 3:02 PM / 2 years ago

EMERGING MARKETS-Latam stocks, currencies inch up ahead of Yellen speech

By Bruno Federowski
    SAO PAULO, June 6 (Reuters) - Latin American stocks and
currencies inched up on Monday as commodity prices rose ahead of
comments by Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen.
    Emerging market assets had jumped on Friday after tepid U.S.
labour market figures cast doubt over the prospect of a U.S. 
interest rate increase in the short term. 
    A slower pace of monetary policy tightening could foster
demand for assets from Latin American countries, which offer
higher returns.
    After recently signaling a hike could come as soon as June,
Yellen will speak on the economic outlook and monetary policy at
1630 GMT. 
    "Markets are clearly interested in any change in her message
from two Fridays ago suggesting that higher rates might be
appropriate in the 'coming months'," Scotiabank analysts wrote
in a client note.
    Chile's peso strengthened for a third consecutive
day, tracking a rise in prices of copper, the country's
main export.
    Crude oil prices  jumped to a fresh
seven-month high after attacks on Nigerian oil infrastructure.
    Brazil's stocks and real currency rose,
though concerns over corruption scandals implicating senior
members of interim President Michel Temer's administration
    Stock market gains were capped by a drop in shares of
education company Kroton SA. Days after Kroton made a
preliminary all-stock deal for Estácio Participações SA
, smaller rival Ser Educacional placed a
non-binding merger bid for the same company. 
    Shares of Brazilian Suzano Papel e Celulosa SA 
rose 0.8 percent after the pulp and paper producer said it
resumed normal output on Saturday after a fire halted operations
at its plant in the city of Suzano, Sao Paulo. 
    Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1450 GMT:
 Stock indexes                                daily %   YTD %
                                               change  change
 MSCI Emerging Markets                826.41     1.25    2.78
 MSCI LatAm                          2128.19     1.15   14.99
 Brazil Bovespa                     50840.67     0.44   17.28
 Mexico IPC                         46077.62     0.33    7.21
 Chile IPSA                          3976.91     0.53    8.06
 Chile IGPA                         19575.21     0.48    7.84
 Argentina MerVal                   12835.33     0.34    9.94
 Colombia IGBC                       9732.91      0.6   13.87
 Currencies                                   daily %   YTD %
                                               change  change
 Brazil real                          3.5117     0.36   12.40
 Mexico peso                         18.5740     0.09   -7.24
 Chile peso                            679.7     0.56    4.41
 Colombia peso                       3017.36     0.05    5.03
 Peru sol                             3.3139     0.64    3.02
 Argentina peso (interbank)          13.7500     0.80   -5.58
 (Reporting by Bruno Federowski; Additional reporting by Paula
Arend Laier; Editing by James Dalgleish)
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